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3 1223 90187 1575 



MAY 20 1966 


1. Ayuntamiento, 

The present-day Boc.rd cf Supervisors represents the develop- 
ment of a succession of legislative bodies which preceded it 
under Mexican rule. The first half of the nineteenth 
century was a period of numerous and sweeping cnanges in the 
Mexican government, but in 1836 an entirely new Constitution 
was adopted. Under it there was established in San Francisco; 
then known as Yerba Buena, a legislative body, the forerunner 
of today's 3oard of Supervisors, designated as the 
Ayuntamiento. The members of the Ayuntamiento were appointed 
by the territorial officials, and their duties were curiously 
similar to those of the Board of Supervisors in modern times. 
They irere required to provide for, arcong other local affairs, 
the following: health, convenience, ornament, order and 
security within the city; cleanliness of streets; regula- 
tion of duality of meats and drugs; establishment of 
prisons; hospitals and charitable institutions; birth, death 
and marriage records; an adequate water sup ily; straight, 
paved and lighted streets; guideboards at road intersections 
to show directions and distances to the nearest Pueblo; and 

In l8)(.9 there was held the first meeting of the Ayuntamiento, 
or town council, under .\merican rule. John \'. Geary was the 
first Alcalde, or Mayor, and he sat as President of the 
Council. Today, the Mayor has a sect in the Board of Super- 
visors, with a rir^ht to participate in the Board's debates, 
but lie is not entitled to vote. 

2. Consolidation Act. 

In lb^O, the City of San Francisco was created by an act' of 
the State Legislature. The city offices were independent 
of the offices of the County of San Francisco, and thus i 
there were two sets of officials, one for the city and one 
for the county. Then, in 1856, the so-called Consolidation 
Act was passed by the Legislature, It consolidated the city 
and county governments into one, with geographic and politi- 
cal boundaries being coterminous. At that time, as now, 
San Francisco enjoys the only governmental set-up of this 
consolidated nature in California. Some of its officers 
are essentially city officials, others are county officers, 
and usually it is the nature of the official act they are 
called upon to perform which determines whether they are 
acting in a city or county capacity. 

3. Home Rule. 

In 1900, San Francisco came under the operation of its first 
home-rule charter. Prior to that time, it acted as a so- 
called general law city, and all of its functions were 
exercised under the general authority of St?te statutes. 
By determining that they would take advantage of the home- 
rule provisions of the State Constitution, the people of 
the City and County took the position, in effect, that as 
to all matters of purely municipal concern (by that is 
meant all those nrtters not of State-wide scope, over which 
the State retains full power to legislate), the local law 
would be supreme. 


k» 1932 Charter. 

The first home-rule charter remained as the basic local law 
until the year 1932, when it was superseded by the Charter 
presently in effect. The significant changes effected by 
the present Charter consist of provisions for a fundamentally 
strong-Mayor form of government, with a substantial amount 
of power vested in a Chief Administrative Officer, and for 
fiscal operations to be carried out on a cash basis. 


Under the present Charter, the Board of Supervisors consists 
of eleven members elected at large. That is they are not 
elected by districts or wards, as was the coso in the past 
and as is now the case in many other cities, but are elected 
from the community as a whole. Also, in past times, the 
Board has numbered eighteen or fifteen instead of eleven. 

The number has gradually dwindled in order to avoid a body 
so large as to be unwieldy, while retaining a sufficient 
number to assure a representative group of men and women 
in elective legislative office. To run for the office of 
supervisor a person must be a voting citizen who has lived 
in San Francisco for at least five years. He must file a 
declaration of candidacy with the registrar of voters, 
stating in one hundred words or less his qualifications, 
together with certificates of ten to twenty sponsors. He 
must pay a fee of $30. 

The terms of the members are staggered so that in consecutive 
odd numbered years, six are elected in one such year and 
five in the next such year. The salary of each member is 
}9600 per year. The positions are part-time, at least in 
theory, but the Board meetings each week, the numerous 
committee meetings which are scheduled, and the cx-officio 
meetings which arc demanded of the members have mounted 
tremendously in volume during the past three decades, along 
with the rapid growth of the community and the greatly 
expanded scope of services provided by the municipality, 
and therefore in actual practice the positions are full-time 
in every sense of the word except possibly for the remunera- 
tion which they command. Vacancies in the membership of the 
Board are filled by appointment of the Mayor for the unexpired 

The voters have kept for themselves the power to "fire" any 
elected official before his term is up. The way in which 
this is done is known as the recall. In San Francisco the 
voters have this power, which is exercised by getting a 
percentage of the voters to sign a petition directing that 
a special reccll election be held. Supervisors, as well as 
other elected officials, may be removed by use of the recall. 
They may also be suspended by the Mayor, and then be removed 
by a three-fourths vote of the Board of Supervisors based on 
written charges preferred by the Mayor. 

The personnel of the Board of Supervisors traditionally repre- 
sents a broad cross-section of the people of San Franc isco e 
In past years, it was not uncommon to find prototypes of the 
popular image of cigar-smoking politicians included in the 
membership. The color and glamor which they brought to the 
Board, and, too, the very real contributions which they made 
to the welfare and progress of the City have found permanent 
places in the history of San Francisco. Today we find, in 
keeping with modern trends, a somewhat different type of 
citizen who is attracted to service on the Board. The 
present membership includes leading representatives of the 
community's professional, business and labor groups., There 
is often a preponderance of members from the legal profession 
on the Board, but far from detracting from the value of 
the Board's efforts, their presence has brought an incisive 
and eminently fair quality to the Board's work which has won 
acclaim from all segments of the community. 

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1. Board vs. Council. 

Under the terms of the present Charter, theoretically, the 
functions of the Board of Supervisors are strictly legis- 
lative in character, except in one or two isolated instances 
where the Board acts in a quasi- judicial capacity. Because 
San Francisco has a consolidated city and county government, 
your legislative body rets in a dual capacity - as a Board 
of Supervisors, and a.lso as a City Council. In some 
instances, the Board acts pursuant to authority of St°te 
law, and in other matters under the authority of its home- 
rule Charter. 

2. Charter - residual powers of the Board. 

Our Charter does not represent, as is commonly thought, a 
grant of powers to the City and County. Rather, it has been 
defined as a limitation on the full and complete powers 
vested in local officials when the people of San Francisco 
decided they would be home-ruled with respect to their 
municipal affairs. The Charter outlines the duties of the 
various officers and departments, and then it goes on to 
say that the power's of the city and county, except the 
powers reserved to the people or delegated to other officials, 
boards or commissions shall be vested in the Board of 
Supervisors. Also, it has an important provision to the 
effect that the exercise of all rights and powers of the 
city and county when not prescribed in the charter shall be 
as provided by ordinance or resolution of the Board of 
Supervisors. Therefore, it can be seen that the authority 
of the Board extends over a very wide range of municipal 

In one area, the Charter sets out very strict limitations on 
the powers of the Board. It says that neither the Board, 
nor its committees, nor any of its members shall dictate, 
suggest or interfere with appointments, promotions, compen- 
sations, disciplinary actions, contracts, requisitions for 
purchases or other administrative reconnen'aations or actions 
of the Chief Adminis trative Officer, or of department heads 
under him, or under the respective boards or commissions. 
.Any violation shall constitute official misconduct which 
will justify removal from office. 

It was the policy of the Board of Freeholders which framed 
the Charter to effectively deprive the Board of Supervisors 
of all administrative powers - "hands off" was their inten- 
tion, and that intention has been substantially observed 
since 1932. However, from a practical point of view, 
indirectly, the authority of the Board finds expression in 
connection with most of the functions of government, and 
this is particularly true in affairs involving the appro- 
priation and expenditure of moneys. hany of the Board's 
actions and functions are inextricably related to the 
administrative operations of government* 

3. Quasi- judicial functions* 

The Board of Supervisors departs from its traditional role 
as a legislative body when it sits in a judicial capacity 
in a fe*r matters which come before it officially for 
adjudication, Examples are its actions as a court of appeal 
from decisions of the City Planning Commission in zoning 
matters, its adjudication of applications for reduction of 
assessments proposed by the Assessor, and its consideration 
of appeals from street work assessments imposed by the 
Department of Public Wbrka, 

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1. Committee structure. 

The Board of Supervisors operates somewhat along the lines 
of the United States Congress and the California Legislature 
in that it has a number of committees which screen matters 
presented to the Board. After preliminary consideration, 
the committoos either send the proposed measures along to 
the full Board for a voir,, or table them if they are con- 
sidered to be of doubtful merit. The standing committees 
of the Board number eleven, and they are designed to have 
initial jurisdiction over every conceivable object of 
official action. For example, there is a Finance Committee 
which considers all matters affecting in any way the 
finances, revenues, toxo3 and fiscal procedure of the City 
and County; a Hoalth Committee which hears proposals por- 
taining to public health; a Streets and Transportation Com- 
mittee which entertains all matters relating to freeways, 
street improvements and transit facilities; and so on. 

2. Public Hearings. 

In the course of their deliberations, the committees (to 
each of which is assigned an experienced Assistant Clerk of 
the Board for necessary clerical and administrative assis- 
tance) mail notices to all ascertainable interested persons 
who might be in favor of or opposed to an issue, set up a 
calendar of business, and then hold a public hearing, usually 
in the Committee meeting room on the second floor of the 
City Hall. The Committee (usually consisting of three Board 
members) at the appointed time calls the particular item up 
for discussion, and everyone interested is accorded an oppor- 
tunity to be fully heard. Then the Committee decides that 
it will send the measure on to the full Board with a recom- 
mendation that it be approved, or it may desire to hold addi- 
tional hearings in the future, or it may conclude that the 
matter is not a meritorious one and direct that it be filed 
or tabled. The parliamentary rules followed by the Com- 
mittees are essentially the same as those in use at Board 
meetings, except that the privilege of the floor is extended 
as a matter of course. 

3. Charter amendments. 

One of the primary duties of the Board is to screen and pass 
along to the voters proposals for amendment of the Charter. 
The original 1932 Charter has been amended by having sections 
added or deleted or altered in more than 350 instances. The 
freeholders no doubt would have difficulty in recognizing 
some of the provisions over which they labored so hard and 
long, but the constant change is quite understandable when 
one considers the infinite technological, sociological and 
ideological changes which have occurred in the past three 
decades and which undoubtedly will continue to occur in the 
future. A charter amendment must be sponsored personally 
by a member of the Board. After its introduction, it is 
referred to the Governmental Services Committee for public 
hearings and careful review. If it survives that test, it 
is sent along to the Board, which, with the concurrence of 
six affirmative votes, may pass it on to the voters at the 
next following election. If a majority of the electors favor 
it, then it is transmitted to the State Legislature for 
approval, following which it is filed with the Secretary of 
State and thus becomes a part of the organic law of the City 
and County. The Charter and amendments to it, incidentally, 
have the stature of State law, and so are superior to purely 
local law in the form of ordin ces. 

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il. Ordinances 

The highest form of action taken by the Board of Supervisors 
is an ordinance. It is an act or lav; of a-local govern- 
mental agency, in this case the Board of Supervisors, duly 
enacted by the proper authorities and expressed in written 
ordaining form. It has been defined as a local law of a 
municipal corporation, duly enacted by proper authorities, 
prescribing general, uniform and permanent rules of con- 
duct, relating to the corporate affairs cf the municipality. 
For instance, regulations involving persons or property 
which impose a penalty by fine, imprisonment or forfeiture 
for their violation must always be in the form of an or- 
dinance. Our Charter specifies somewhat vaguely that 
every legislative act shall be by ordinance, but our dif- 
ficulty has been in obtaining a satisfactory and defini- 
tive explanation of what constitutes a legislative act. 
Legal authorities as yet have not attempted a categorical 

It might be informative to trace the path taken by a pro- 
posed ordinance in order to have an understanding of the 
processing to which it is subjected. An ordinance must 
be introduced by a Board member at a meeting of the Board, 
As a matter of actual practice, most of those proposed 
ordinances which are received from the several department 
heads during the week, in the Clark's office, are listed 
in the Board's calendar of matters for the following 
Monday meeting, with a note appended to each indicating 
to which Committee they are being referred by the 
President, and it is implied that the introduction of 
such measure is being made by the President. Other 
proposed ordinances, however, may be and are introduced 
individually during the meeting by the sponsoring 

Following, or perhaps prior to, the Board meeting at 
which Committee referral takes place, the ordinance is 
processed in the Senior Legislative Clerk's section of 
the Clerk's office. There it is indexed on a Kardex 
card, on which a complete chronological history will be 
maintained, and on a Chaindex card which will provide an 
alphabetical lead to its whereabouts, A file jacket is 
prepared, with a history sheet and with a permanently 
assigned number, so that for all time easy identification 
of the subject matter may be assured. 

After introduction, tho ordinance is referred via the 
Rules Committee to a Committee of the Board for public 
hearings, unless it is an emergency measure, in which 
case the Board may either send It to Committee, or enact 
it immediately, by at least nine affirmative votus, 
without reference to Committee. 

During Committee consideration, both sides of any contro- 
versial issue are fully heard, departmental reports and 
recommendations are received and studied, .and every 
facet of the proposal is explored in order that the 
Committee may formulate an informed recommendation for 
Board action. 

After the ordinance has been reported out to the Board by 
the Committee, unless it is an emergency measure, it must 
be passed at two separate meetings, requiring at least 
six votes to pass at each of the two readings. Thereafter, 
it goes back to the Senior Legislative Clerk's section 
for recordation in a volume which cross-indexes file and 
ordinance numbers, is transmitted to the Mayor's office 
for his signature and comesback to the Clerk's office 
for permanent filing in a bound volume. At the same 
time, an exact copy is delivered to the official newspaper 
for printing. On passage for second reading, the ordin- 
ance is printed in full. Upon final passage, a notice 
including the title of the ordinance, together with an 
indication that it has finally passed, is printed. In 
this way, ample public notice of proposed legislation 
is given, and the constitutional requirement of due 
and adequate notice is met, 

The Charter specifies thct each ordinance shell be prepared 
or approved as to form by the City Attorney, but in prac- 
tice it has been found that a great number are drafted in 
the Clerk's office. The Board enacts several hundred or- 
dinances annually, and also considers a considerable number 
in addition, which for one reason or another never reach 
the stage of final enactment. 

5. Resolutions., 

Another form of Board action is the resolution. A resolution 
generally speaking is a proposal submitted in 'writing, the 
effective clause of which is "Resolved that,.,". It is more 
formal than any business submitted orally and called a 
motion, and is less formal than the ordinance. It usually 
does not demand the legal processing required of an ordin- 
ance, and can be passed after consideration at only one 
Board meeting, instead of two. A resolution cannot contain 
a penal clause, and is usually employed in expressing declar- 
ations of policy, discharging functions of an administrative 
rather than purely legislative nature, acting in a capacity 
involving ceremonial expression or social amenities, and 
performing Supervisorial duties of a transitory nature, 
which have no permanent or lasting effect. 

The Board adopts approximately seven hundred resolutions 
each year, and at the same time considers and rejects several 
hundred for which no need can be determined. In the main, 
they are processed in the same manner as ordinances. 

6. Motions. 

The third form of official expression ordinarily employed by 
the Board of Supervisors is the motion. A motion has been 
defined as a proposal that a deliberative assembly take cer- 
tain action, or that it express itself as holding certain 
views. It has been said that it is the inherent right of 
every parliamentary body to act by motion. A motion is the 
least formal of the Board's forms of action, is ordinarily 
made orally and usually pertains to parliamentary or intra- 
Board matters. If it is of substantial importance or length, 
it usually must be presented as a written resolution. 


1. Agenda. 

The Charter requires that the Board of Supervisors meet in 
the legislative chambers on the second floor of the City Hall, 
and that regular meetings be hold. The Board, by resolution, 
has decreed that its regular meetings shall be held each 
Monday (or the next succeeding regular business day) com- 
mencing at 2:00 p.m. The public is invited, and the average 
attendance is moderate, rising or declining according to the 
degree of community interest in calendared items. 

On the Friday afternoon preceding each Monday's Board meeting 
the Clerk's office prepares a mimeographed Calendar of 
Matters which includes all items regularly scheduled to be 
considered and acted upon at the meeting. Copies of the 
Calendar are sent to the homes or offices of the members in 
order that they may familiarize themselves with its con- 
tents over the weekend. In addition, approximately two 
hundred copies of the Calendar are run off for the use of 
the public, the press, and interested departmental repre- 
sentatives. No mailing list is maintained due to the paucity 
of Clerk's personnel, the attendant expense, and the diffi- 
culty which would be experienced in keeping such a list 
current. Interested persons are invited to call at the 
Clerk's office for their copies at any time after L\.:00 p»m. 
on Friday afternoon. 

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2. Ordor of Business. 

The Board meeting follows a proscribed pattern, laid down 
in the Board's Rules of Order which deal with various 
matters of parliamentary procedure. Although there is 
provision for suspension of the rules, the Board ordinar- 
ily follows quite closely the prescribed order of business, 
which is: 

(1) Roll Call. 

(2) Pledge of Allegiance. 

(3) Approval of Journal. 
()|.) Communications. 

(5>) Calendar Matters. 

(6) Reports of Committees. 

(7) Roll Call for introduction or presentation of 

measures not considered or reported on by 

The listed order is self-explanatory, but it is interesting 
to note that the catch-all item listed as number seven is 
the phase of the Board's proceedings which often produces 
the most interesting and constructive measures. That is 
the last port of the day's program when each member, in 
alphabetical order, may address his colleagues on any matter, 
within the Board's sphere of jurisdiction, in which he 
happens to be interested. Then he may bring up unscheduled, 
uncalendared, and previously undiscussed matters, and either 
ask for immediate action thereon by vote of the Board, or for 
referral to Committee for further study and ultimate recom- 
mendation for Boord action. Or, he may moke inquiry about 
the state of any City affairs, and request a report thereon 
from the interested departments. The scope of the Board's 
power to inquire into departmental affairs is extremely 

3. Parliamentary Procedure. 

As mentioned above, the parliamentary procedure followed by 
the Board is laid down in its Rules of Order. The Rules 
comprehensively cover the mechanical aspects of the Board's 
proceedings and the procedural course which its meeting and 
the matters before it must take. Included are rules pertain- 
ing to attendance at meetings, consideration of motions, 
voting requirements, privilege of the floor, special orders 
of business, and the like. Also included are the prescribed 
duties of the presiding officer of the Bo a rd whose title is 

The President of the Board has a number of important func- 
tions to perform. Among them are the appointment of the 
membership of all standing and special committees and their 
respective chairman, the designation of Board representa- 
tives to attend meetings and conventions of other organiza- 
tions, the assignment of seats and offices for the use of the 
members, the preservation of order and decorum, the decision 
of all questions of order, and so on. In addition, the 
President authenticates by his signature, when necessary, 
all documents issued or authorized by order of the Board and 
represents the Board when requested at official and cere- 
monial functions. A great deal of his time is occupied in 
discharging the duties of his office, and in substantial 
measure the President is looked to throughout the community 
for an explanation of the various positions taken by the 

l+. Journal of Proceedings. 

The report of the official actions taken by the Board at 
its regular and special meetings is contained in a pub- 
lication designated .: th. Journal of Proceedings. The 
Charter provides that the Clerk of the Board shall keep 
such a journal. Pursuant to the Charter's edict, a 
printed account of the Board's action is prepared and 

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permanently maintained. The purpose of the Journal is 
primarily, if not entirely, to provide a fair and complete 
record of the proceedings in the Board's meetings. If 
accurate, complete and unambiguous matters are recorded, 
they will be treated by the courts as conclusive evidence 
of the facts therein stated. Also, it is the acts of the 
members of the Board in assembling together at the proper 
time and place, and the casting of their votes on the 
various measures presented to them, which determine the 
validity or invalidity of their actions. Nevertheless, a 
sufficient record must be made of their activities in order 
to furnish satisfactory evidence of not only the subject 
matter of the Board's decisions, but of the fact that they 
are adopted in accordance with the law by which the Board 
is governed. 

After the Journal is printed, a number of official copies 
is signed by the Clerk and held for binding and permanent 
retention. Other copies are distributed to an official 
mailing list, for information and retention. Thereafter, 
the contents of the Journal are completely indexed by the 
Clerk's office and the index, after typing, is bound and 
retained in permanent form. 


The Board of Supervisors and its committees, serving as 
what might be deemed a one-house local Congress, processes 
an amazing amount of potential and realized legislative 
matters. It establishes the policy for a tremendously 
wide scope of civic activities and improvement. The over- 
whelming amount of detail which is proces'ed by the Board 
and its committees in lengthy and extensive meetings runs 
the entire gamut of affairs handled by local government. 
Merely by way of illustration, a few of the Board's 
activities are cited, The Board approves public welfare 
payments; carefully scrutinizes and then adopts the annual 
budget of the City and Count;/; determines, as an appellate 
body, appeals from decisions of the City Planning Commission; 
sits annually as a County Board of Equalization and adjusts 
property assessments; closely screens and makes supple- 
mental appropriations for all departmental purposes; 
purchases, leases and sells real property; and enacts 
traffic regulations. In addition, the Board authorizes 
street improvements; reviews proposed bond issues and 
charter amendments and, if acceptable, directs submission 
of them to the voters; establishes salaries for all City 
employees; and generally exercises not only a legislative 
but also a supervisory control of the entire local govern- 
ment through its grasp of the purse strings. 


1. i'f-nction,". gc-nevrally. 

In order to carry out the administrative and clerical func- 
tions attendant upon the Board's actions, the Charter has 
made provisions for the Board to appoint an executive head 
of its office. Pie is designated the Clerk of the Board of 
Supervisors, and is ex-officio Clerk of the Board of 
Equalization. The Clerk has charge of the office and 
records of the Board and its committees, and the personnel 
employed to handle the business affairs and operations of 
the Bo.-.rd, its committees and members when engaged in 
official duties. Additionally, the Clerk must keep a 
Journal of Proceedings of the Board and files of ail 
ordinances and resolutions, properly indexed. He is 
responsible for publication of ordinances, resolutions 
and other matters acted upon by the Board and, as the 
Charter states, has other duties and responsibilities 
prescribed by the Board, 

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A3 a matter of actual practice, the Clerk, while in no way 
a participant in the formulation of policy, acts as consul- 
tant to the Board, its committees and members in connection 
with the most or all of the official matters presented to 
them. To the best of his ability, he affords his counsel 
to the members, when requested, for consideration along with 
information from other sources. The Clerk and his staff are 
impressed into service continually for the purpose of draft- 
ing proposed charter amendments, ordinances and resolutions. 
In addition, when directed, the;; prepare statements and cor- 
respondence for the members. In other communities, a compar- 
able position is that of City Clerk, inasmuch as San Fran- 
cisco has a County Clerk whose functions are directly and 
solely connected with the rendition of services to the 
Superior Court. 

2. Personnel, 

The Clerk has a staff consisting of principally clerical 
personnel which attends to the administrative business of 
the Board. The staff is a highly experienced one and nor- 
mally its members have come into the Clerk's office via 
the promotional route from other departments of City govern- 
ment. It is interesting to note that, since the Super- 
visor's office is acutely aware of the need for economy and 
industry in local government, its fifteen-member staff has 
not been increased between 1932 and 1966. During that same 
period of time, since the advent of the new Charter, the 
growth of the community and the added services provided by 
local government have obviously increased greatly along 
with the demands made upon the Supervisors and their staff, 

3. Piccords, 

Mention already has been made of the Journal of Proceedings 
which is the basic recording instrument for the Board's 
official activities. In addition thereto, the Clerk's office 
maintains bound volumes of original signed ordina ces end 
resolutions, bound volumes containing copies of all pub- 
lished legislation, bound copies of volumes entitled ''Muni- 
cipal Reports" which were published during the period i860- 
1919, and file jackets containing complete documentation 
with respect to current and past legislative matters. In 
addition to the various volumes which are available in the 
Clerk's office as records of the Board's actions, a number 
of indices are maintained which afford the searcher an 
easy lead to the contents of the volumes. They include a 
journal index, a Kardex, a Cha index, a system of cards re- 
flecting oil changes in Municipal Code and Administrative 
Code sections, and various indices to actions which occurred 
prior to the year 19lj-8 when the current filing system was 

General, regulatory and penal ordinances of the Board Are 
compiled in the San Francisco Municipal Code. Part I of 
the Code relates to certain administrative matters, and Part 
III of the Code pertains to license fees and permit procedure, 
Part II of the Municipal Code contains eleven chapters, 
each of which is devoted to a particular aspect of municipal 
regulation. For instance, there is a Police Code, a Fire 
Code, a Health Code, a Housing Code, a City Planning Code, 
and so forth. Each of the eleven chapters in Part II are 
reviewed and reprinted periodically in order that up-to-date 
regulations may be available for distribution to the public. 
Prices for Codes are established on the basis of cost to 
the City, and they may be purchased at the office of the 
Purchaser of Supplies in the City Hall. In addition to the 
Municipal Code, there recently has been approved and printed 
the San Francisco Administrative Code. That, as its name 
implies, is an enactment which the Charter permits the Board 
to male in specifying or detailing the respective powers, 
duties, methods and procedure in the several departments and 

- 9 - 

offices. Its primary purpose is to codify in one place all 
administrative directives of the legislative body, not 
only for the guidance of local officials, but also for 
the enlightenment of the general cublic with respect to 

the administrative and procedural matters set forth 


Because of the unusual nature of our City Government, the 
members of San Francisco's Board of Supervisors actually 
do two jobs. In the role of City Councilmen, they are 
responsible for all the laws, ordinances, regulations and 
long-torm project plans covering every part of life within 
the City, as well as the efficient and economical expendi- 
ture of all funds derived from taxes and other revenues. 
They must have personal knowledge and. understanding of each 
of the City's many operations and services, and spend 
endless hours in the effort to improve and make them more 
efficient and economical. 

In their role of County Supervisors, they must coordinate 
all State arid Federal legislation which affects the City 
and must maintain an active, vigilant participation in 
legislation at all levels to safeguard our interests. 

In a determined effort to assure a special type of govern- 
ment adapted as ideally as possible to serve the particular 
requirements and demands of San Franciscans, the free- 
holders devisod a hybrid structure which incorporates some 
of the best features of the strong-mayor, city manager, 
and commission types. They wanted to place greater res- 
ponsibility on a few men in high office by reducing the 
number of elected officers. They wanted to replace 
political appointees with professionally-trained administra- 
tors. They wanted to bring about greater efficiency and 
economy in city affairs by using businesslike management. 
They wanted to create a charter which would make good 
government easier to achieve. 

To the achievement of all those salutary ends, each member 
of the Board of Supervisors is dedicated. 


March 31, I960 
Revised IO/1/6I4. 

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